The Mind-Shuttering Odds of Getting a Perfect March Bracket


You have a one in 500,000 chance to be struck by a lightning in any given year, a one in 14 million chance of winning the lottery, a one in 55,000,000 chance of having quintuplets, and even less chance of getting the perfect NCAA Tournament bracket. 

Millions of people fill up their NCCA Tournament brackets every year, and not even a single one of these brackets ever get lucky. It doesn’t matter if you are a college football aficionado who has put in months of research in potential champions or you are a regular guy attempting to pick winners at random. The chances are nearly certain that you will never even get close to a perfect March Madness bracket. 

Similar to sports betting attempts to nail the perfect bracket is now a huge part of enjoying the NCAA Tournament. If you look at the odds of correctly nailing all the 63 games – which no one has ever done, you will understand why it is a near-impossible task. If you want to correctly pick all 63 games randomly, then you are staring at a one in 9, 223, 372, 036, 854, 775, 808. 

This is a one in a 9.2 quintillion chance. To put it into more perspective, there are 292 billion years in 9.2 quintillion seconds. It is not possible for anyone to fill all the 63 brackets randomly. However, you will be surprised that the odds of going 63 of 63 are enhanced if you have some knowledge and experience in college football. 

In 2020, data from the Brackets challenge was used by NCAA to determine that an average player has a one in 120.2 billion chance of getting a perfect bracket. Think about becoming a professional basketball player for example. Typically, about 540,000 players take part in men’s high school basketball. Out of this huge number, just one in 35 will proceed to play basketball in college, and less than one in 75 will proceed to get drafted to the NCAA. 

This implies that the chances of a high school basketball player making it to the NBA, is a mere one in 3, 300. Sounds unlikely, right? But this is still 36 million times more likely than getting a perfect bracket. Secondly, consider the chances of being dealt a royal flush. This is normally the rarest hand in a game of five-card poker, and the chance is always one in 854, 318. 

Well, when compared to getting the perfect bracket, this is 185,000 times more likely to happen. For you to be struck by lightning, you will have to be the unlucky one among one million people – odds of one in a million, yet, this is 120,000 times more likely than nailing the perfect bracket. And, for you to get hit by a meteorite from space, you will have to be the unlucky one among 1.6 million people – one to 1.6 million chance. 

But this is 75,000 more likely to happen than you getting the perfect bracket. Finally, winning the Lotto Max Jackpot offers a one in 33.3 million chance. This is 3610 times more likely than nailing the perfect bracket, and for you to have quintuplets, there is a one in 55 million chance, which is 2185 times more likely compared to getting the perfect bracket. 

However, the hunt for the perfect bracket is still on. This year, the majority of the people in search of the college football holy grail will be motivated by the exploits of Gregg Nigl. Gregg, in 2019, came closer to a perfect bracket than those before him, by managing to correctly predict the first 49 for 49 of the games. 

His streak ended in the Sweet Sixteen when Purdue beat Tennessee. This run was incredible, considering that the odds of getting just the first round of games right is about 17,000 to one. But that notwithstanding, getting the perfect bracket was still millions of miles away. For him to nail the last 15 games in the Sweet Sixteen, he had odds of one in 32, 786. 

So, maybe we will have to resign to the fact that we might never see anyone get the perfect NCAA Tournament bracket. This March, millions are going to scrutinize the starts and the seedings, only to get disappointed when their baskets are busted on the very first day. But, it only takes one, and that one could be you!

Five NBA Players to Watch in 2021



The New Year moves along and the new NBA season continues to make its tentative steps in a new sporting landscape. Things might look a little different around the court but some things never change as the best clubs and the best players look to rise to the top. 


The 2020/21 campaign is already starting to take shape and some key performers have already had their say. As the season continues to develop, we look at five players who could have a big part to play in the relative success of their franchises. 


James Wiseman: Golden State Warriors 


A giant center at 7 feet tall, James Wiseman had plenty of supporters ahead of his rookie season in the NBA and, so far, he’s been able to live up to the hype. Back in 2016 when he was just 15 years old, ESPN had already identified him as one of the top 25 players set to be recruited in 2019’s class and it was the Warriors who eventually sealed the deal.


At the age of just 19, Wiseman made his debut for Golden State against the Brooklyn Nets on the very first day of the new NBA season. It wasn’t the best start to the campaign for his new team as the Warriors went down by 99-125 but their new center impressed, scoring 19 points, while claiming six rebounds and two steals. 


Caris LeVert: Brooklyn Nets 


The Nets have made a fast start to the new NBA season and many are watching them with interest. They’ve never won the NBA Championship and the last of only two Conference titles came back in 2003 but a strong roster means that they are widely tipped for glory this time. 


One of the men looking to drive this Brooklyn team to success is Caris LeVert who tends to go under the radar in a team that contains Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving. At 26, that’s the story of LeVert’s career but he’s happy to go quietly about his business, scoring vital points, while the big names get the headlines. 


And it’s all working: nba betting sites listed on sbo.net have the Nets available as clear favorites to win the Eastern Conference. The team are second to the Lakers in the overall championship betting and Caris LeVert will help to underpin this side as they aim to deliver on those predictions. To see if they succeed, check sbo.net as they update those odds while offering news and opinion on the developing season. 


Michael Porter Jr: Denver Nuggets 


As the 14th overall draft pick back in 2018, Michael Porter Jr’s pro career had an unheralded start but he’s built steadily since then and is widely tipped for great things this season. In two years, he’s yet to nail a regular start for the Nuggets but his stats from the bubble suggest that his time may well have come. 


An average of 22 points per game is an impressive one and that includes a high of 37 points. He’s still only 22 and with Denver high in the NBA Standings in the Western Conference, Porter is set for a major contribution in another long and grueling season. 


Patrick Williams: Chicago Bulls 


Back to our list of rookies now and we come to a man who enjoyed a stunning career at college level. Having impressed for Florida State, Patrick Williams was added to the Chicago Bulls roster, ahead of the 2020/21 campaign and he’s made a steady start at pro level. 


The 19 year old started the game against Atlanta Hawks on December 23rd, claiming a respectable 16 points in a 104-124 loss. With four rebounds, an assist and a steal, it was a confident start and, while it didn’t quite set the NBA alight, there is much more to come from this impressive player. 


RJ Barrett: New York Knicks 


An average of 14.3 points per game may not sound like a big deal but that’s not a bad return for a rookie in a struggling side. The Knicks underperformed in 2020 and should be in line for a better campaign this time around. The fact that RJ Barrett shone in that disappointing season is a testament to his potential and there should be a big improvement in those stats as 2021 develops.

Building ’Superteams’ as Undoubted NBA Fashion



Despite the fact that a type of teams that are called ’superteams’ (three or more All-Star caliber players teaming up) exist for a long time, the number of those that are formed and meet the criteria to be called that way has exponentially increased: Warriors, Cavs, Thunder, even attempts like the Celtics, Rockets, Pelicans, or Timberwolves. 

Many players with high-performance reputation have decided not to renew with their old teams to join these accumulations of stars named ’superteams’ rather than making the league interesting. What they cause with such decisions is a growing interest in a few franchises and the ignorance of the rest of the teams, which remained without their stars and attention. Irving - Hayward (not forgetting Horford and young Tatum and Brown), Harden - Paul, Cousins - Davis... 

The thing is that some ’superteams’ came off like a big hit from the first moment, like Warriors or Rockets, others have had a hard time in the beginning, like the Cavs, and others had zero chemistry causing them to make results below predictions or worrying results, like the Thunder. Of course, chemistry is a key factor when it comes to whether a team is successful or not, and more so if we talk about the stars of the respective teams. Here is a small analysis of the three ’superteams’ we have now or up until recently in the NBA and a handful of interesting contenders. The above graphic from Betway shows some of the recent super teams that dominated the NBA. 

Warriors 

Despite all the hatred they arouse for being the ones who signed the “traitor” Durant and for dominating the league so easily, we must recognize something about the Warriors. Apart from making basketball fun to watch, they managed to fit ’pieces’ incredibly effectively into their system without changing it, while maintaining their winning scheme. The arrival of Durant, which could have been a fiasco due to his failure to blend into the team’s play of ’The Bay’, turned out to be a total success as he accepted the Warriors’ play as a native and contributed to the sweep in the playoffs. They have stepped on the brakes for now, but they are still a challenge for all rivals to beat them. 

Cavaliers 

After a tough failure that allowed them to learn that not everything can be won with comebacks of star players, the Cavaliers have taken on a Wade, eager to add one more title to his collection, and have formed one of the most renowned quintets in the NBA: Isaiah Thomas, Wade, LeBron, Love, and Tristan Thompson. Despite the injury of Isaiah and Love as a center after Thompson’s injury, the Cavs’ improvement has been tremendous after a dire and doubtful start. 

The leap in their quality was such that they managed to match the Cleveland franchise record for consecutive victories. With a completely reconstructed team, the Cavs acted as they had a lot to prove, being a very strong rival that could not be removed before the Finals, when they lost to the Warriors. 

Thunder 

Excitement, joy, enthusiasm, and a lot of mixed feelings were what OKC fans had when they found out that Paul George will be wearing the jersey of their team, while Carmelo’s arrival only increased high expectations. 

And these expectations had a solid ground given the current MVP was teamed up with one of the top players in the NBA and also a complete player at the time, who still had a lot to give to basketball. Regardless, the start has been hesitant and the ’ship’ did not seem to be straightening out but everyone in the club thought the patience was needed to let the chemistry kick. But it did not. These Thunder were not fearsome and they lost to Utah in the first round. 

Possibly the key between success and failure was is in the renewal of Paul George, given it was observed as the necessary ’equipment’ of the Thunder to win the ring and attract more stars. However, the following season ended for the team the same way as the last – with the elimination already on the first step of the Playoffs. 

Celtics 

In Boston, things have changed so much at once - signing Hayward, the most requested free agent, and trading Thomas and Crowder for Irving, which resulted in reaching the Conference Finals. Much has been talked about the ’big three’ that Hayward and Irving could have formed, which coincided with the explosion of young talents. Probably, if Gordon had not been injured, neither Brown nor Tatum would have so much prominence and, therefore, their season would not have been so spectacular. Both present and future look great for the Celtics. 

Rockets 

The first reactions to Chris Paul’s arrival in Houston were negative as there were players who were more suited to the Rockets style and who would not overshadow Harden’s work so much. To the surprise of some and the joy of many, the Rockets have started as a real rocket, staying at the top of the conference and with a Harden who won the MVP, turned to be a tough bone to crack to favorable Warriors in the Western Finals. To conclude, despite the marketing and the hypothetical success that comes with signing big stars and building a team full of them, the experiment does not always go well. There are many factors to consider, as well as players’ personalities and playing styles. 

What we all hope is that this trend of forming ’superteams’ will not continue to rise this much because it would completely spoil the interest in this wonderful league. For now, we can enjoy a league where, although less than before, the stars are evenly distributed to make this competition the most interesting and fought in the world of basketball. 

For more picks and predictions, check out the Betway Insider.